I see you, heartbroken and feeling left empty.
You put the work into your marriage, believed the best of your spouse, thought things were okay, and yet he ultimately left you and is with someone else. It’s not fair. Some days you can’t leave your bed, much less your house. I want you to know: the day will come when you can. And you will.
In fact, I see you, doing things you haven’t done by yourself…in a long time (or ever). Like buying a house. Getting a job. Hiring a lawyer. Taking your kids to church as a single parent.
Life is tough, but so are you.
And in some moments, I hear you saying things like, “I must not be attractive enough to keep him interested” or “I guess I wasn’t what he liked” and I want to say stop comparing yourself to the other woman. He was a fool to let you go. Your beauty is there – I see it. Others see it. The only one who didn’t see it was him. His leaving has way more to do with his issues than yours.
I heard you saying something just the other day like, “Maybe I was spending too much time at work” and while I’m like yes, own your part, I also want to say he is the one who chose not to try counseling and ultimately forsake his wedding vows.
Friend, own your part in the demise of this relationship, but don’t you dare take all the blame.
I’m sorry that he made you doubt yourself: your abilities, your beauty, your worth. But let’s remember: he’s not a truth-teller. I hope you can grasp that his view is warped. His compass doesn’t exactly point true north.
You are worthy, able, and beautiful. So much so.
I see you, living a life you can be proud of, even if it’s one you hadn’t planned on. One where you are turning the other cheek, smiling more, and sometimes crying more. You are opening up to others and laughing, too. But you are also taking that weekend trip to go kayaking or on a yoga retreat. You are finding a fulfilling life without him. You’ve been trying new things, finding healthy emotional support, leaning on your girlfriends, your mom, and your sister. Despite being betrayed, you are having fulfilling relationships. I see you finding ways to stay strong, healthy and grounded. I see you being proud of you.
I know it’s hard, God, it’s so hard. Many days you’ve been showing class when you really, really don’t want to. And yet, you’ve also been giving yourself necessary permission to feel anger, to grieve, make mistakes, and to reflect.
As you face an uncertain future, one you didn’t see yourself in, I can’t help but think of these words from A.A. Milne, the author of Winnie the Pooh: “Always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” I want you to not just know these words, but believe them. Memorize them. Have them taped to your mirror. Internalize them. And during those moments when you forget, give me a call, and I’ll remind you. I see it.
I also want you to know that often, uncertainties lead to the best things. They have a way of birthing something new.
So please let the past be something you learn from, but don’t get stuck there.
You’ll find your way through the darkness, friend, because you are a light.
A Friend Who Sees